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Can't Bend the Rules, Beckham

David Beckham (AP Photo/Jae C. Hong)

When in Virginia, carry your ID. This means you, David Beckham.

Yes, even one of the most famous athletes in the world couldn't drink when he failed to produce proof of age, according to "The Beckham Experiment," by Grant Wahl. The new book explores the soccer superstar's career in the United States, where he isn't always treated like a demigod.

In 2007, Beckham and his Los Angeles Galaxy teammates came to Washington to play D.C. United. They headed to Morton's steakhouse in Crystal City, where the waiter took wine orders, then asked for identification. Beckham and Abel Xavier (both in their 30s) were so famous in Europe that they didn't bother carrying IDs. But the Morton's waiter refused to serve them alcohol -- Beckham thought it was a joke; Xavier thundered, "I have a kid who can drink."

It's not that they didn't recognize him, said Morton's spokeswoman Linda Roth, but the restaurant cards anyone if there is any question about age. "The rules are the rules," she said. "Welcome to the Commonwealth of Virginia."

By The Reliable Source  |  July 14, 2009; 1:01 AM ET
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